As a composer, sound-artist and improviser, Stevie Wishart explores medieval and contemporary extremes. She is passionate about music’s unique ability to express new ideas on a level which transcends other routes of communication.
Stevie Wishart is a composer with her roots in improvisation and early music. She is also a performer on the violin, and on the hurdy-gurdy, a stringed keyboard instrument going back to medieval times, its strings sounded by the rim of a wheel. This instrument gives a unique "old-and-new" sound, which resonates in Stevie’s compositions.
The challenge of creating music for a wide range of contexts is central to her working-process, especially within FoAM, where she joins her fellow generalists in re-imagining the relationship between music and nature. This makes a very meaningful contrast to her more conventional music commissions: for choreographers including productions by Michèle Noiret (Théâtre National de Bruxelles) and Wayne McGregor, for the designer Philippe Starck’s ‘Le son du nous’ (Exit festival, Paris), and for a BBC Proms commission. With the support of a Visiting Music Fellowship at the University of Cambridge she is currently composing ‘Concerto à Double Entendre' commissioned by the Orchestra of the Age on Enlightenment and by The Handel and Haydn Society.
Educated at the University of York, the University of Oxford and the Guildhall School of Music and studying informally with John Cage in Edinburgh, her early career was playing with leading free jazz improvisers in London, Berlin, New York and Sydney while also launching her own ensemble Sinfonye and recordings for Decca, Hyperion Records and Glossa as well as many indie labels.
She has performed and had her compositions played at major venues including London’s Wigmore Hall, the Queen Elizabeth Hall and Festival Hall at London's Southbank Centre, the Sydney Opera House, St Peter’s Rome, the Royal Albert Hall, and at the BBC Proms.